Friday, February 22, 2008

Social Network Justice

One of the pleasures of selling social network analysis software and services is seeing what clients do with the new knowledge and tools we provide to them.

Several years ago I started working with an economic justice organization in a major U.S. city. Their focus is on tenant's rights and eliminating slum housing conditions. They had been working with their city attorney gathering information on a group of slumlords that owned apartment buildings that had a long list of continuously unresolved violations that were affecting the health of the tenants and their children.

They wanted a new way to analyze and visualize their data. Since the slumlords were keeping their activities covert, it made sense to uncloak their network using the data my client had gathered along with other available public data. Instead of mapping jihadi terrorists, the economic justice organization would be mapping economic terrorists.